Industry News

Future Apple Watch May Offer Touch ID and Under-screen Camera



 

According to two newly published patent applications, Apple is considering adding Touch ID and a hidden camera under the screen to Apple Watch, Macrumors reports.

Foreign media Patently Apple discovered a patent granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office under the title "Electronic Device with Sealed Button Biometric Sensor System." This patent application explains how to integrate Touch ID into the side buttons of Apple Watch and what practical purposes it can achieve.

 

Touch ID can be used for user identification, device unlocking, and application authorization. It is not difficult to understand why Apple wants to add Touch ID to Apple Watch. At present, Apple Watch still relies on the use of passwords, and will not prompt the password again until the device is removed from the wrist. Biometric authentication allows Apple to ensure that users have higher security when using Apple Watch or making Apple Pay transactions.

 

In addition to Touch ID, another patent has also been exposed. The patent is titled "Electronic Equipment with Two-Level Display". It outlines how to layer a display to include a camera and a flash. The camera and flash are only visible from the outside when needed. Two-level display technology will also be applied to other devices, such as the iPhone, thereby eliminating the gap. But the focus of this patent is Apple Watch.

 

The working principle of this technology is that the electronic device can provide a two-level display screen, which can have an inner layer with a pixel array for displaying images, and an outer layer formed by a light modulator, which has an array of cells, each cell can be placed in a transparent mode or a light-blocking mode. This layer can be effectively closed.

 

In this case, the camera shutter may have an appearance that matches the housing of the electronic device. When an image needs to be captured, the control circuit in the electronic device can temporarily place the shutter in a transparent mode to allow light from the flash or light captured by the camera to pass through.

 

At present, the main reason preventing Apple Watch from becoming a wrist-worn video communication tool is the lack of cameras. If the patent can become a reality, it will be a revolutionary change for Apple Watch.

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